From planning for a worst-case scenario in the line of duty to buying new uniforms, law enforcement officers face financial stresses that aren’t always well-served by the typical civilian-focused bank.
And with approximately 900,000 sworn officers active in the U.S. earning a median pay of $62,960 last year, there are plenty of officers looking for financial products, ranging from loans for their police academy training to policies protecting family finances if they’re killed in the line of duty. In the new Credit Union Tracker, PYMNTS explores how credit unions tailor offerings to serve this sector’s unique needs and concerns.
The Tracker also examines the latest ways credit unions are leveraging technology to win over new members, as well as working to keep federal regulators at bay.
Around the Credit Union World
Across the U.S., credit unions are increasingly investing in technology in the hopes of retaining and growing their membership base – and are now also turning to new partners for some help.
Colorado-based Foothills Credit Union, for instance, recently tapped SaaS technology firm Digital Onboarding Inc. The collaboration aimed to give Foothills Credit Union a more streamlined onboarding process. It was also designed to reduce the rate of new account closures and lower the costs incurred from losing new members.
They aren’t the only credit union turning to technology to improve members’ interactions, however.
New England’s largest credit union, Digital Federal Credit Union, partnered with IT solutions provider Virtusa to bolster its services, such as a speedier onboarding process.
But while credit unions are wooing new members, they’re also feuding with some regulators. This month, the National Association of Federal Credit Unions (NAFCU) sent a letter to Congress, complaining of overregulation by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). The letter urged lawmakers to shift their oversight away from the organization.
Find more on these stories and the rest of the latest headlines in the Tracker.
Serving a Law Enforcement Membership’s Financial Needs
While the NAFCU is hoping to appeal to those who make the laws, some CUs want to work with those that enforce them.
Police and law enforcement officers face work-related financial concerns not shared by most civilians. These range from recruits who need to scrounge up funds to pay for uniforms while they’re still in the academy, to police lodge organizations that need low-cost ways to process members’ dues. And, as a result, many officers may find themselves looking beyond a civilian-focused financial institution to find one that meets their unique financial challenges.
In this month’s feature story, Jim Bedinger, president of the National Police Credit Union, a division of the Chicago Patrolmen’s Federal Credit Union, explains what it takes to cater to a law enforcement membership, and how the credit union works to compete with major banks.
To get the full scoop, download the Tracker.
About the Tracker
The Credit Union TrackerTM, powered by CO-OP Financial Services, is your go-to resource for staying up to date on a month-by-month basis on the trends and changes in the credit union industry.